Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Bear, DE
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Sorry if this isn't as understandable as it should be, I'm at work and multi-tasking while dodging the boss! lol!
I may be WAY off on this and I'm not saying we shouldn't write to the author and the paper but as much as I am ALL for a Mother's right to feed wherever she needs to unharassed, I am equally for an individual's right to write his opinion on it NIP. I probably wouldn't have much faith in any publication if they only published things that they felt were agreeable so I'm not sure writing to the paper will help either because it is the author's freedom of spech/press. I think a better idea would be to write an intelligent and carefully thought out (his obviously was not) response article and submit it for publication. It's like fighting fire with fire! Am I nuts? Let me know what you think.
Write a letter. Ask him if next time he feels compelled to snack on a candy bar in a public store, if he would kindly do it in the restroom. Bathrooms are often disgusting in this world of ours and I will *never* feed my child in one. I will feed him wherever the hell he decides he's hungry. Period
|It sounds like he really doesn't understand the following points:
- just how often infants need to eat, and how hard it is to predict. Her baby is 2 months old. At that age they go from sleepy to hungry VERY QUICKLY.
- what is entailed in bringing a bottle.
- the fact that historically and biologically this is how we're built to feed our children, and the whole idea of it as a private or shameful activity is relatively recent.
Believe it or not, I think breast feeding is perfectly normal and natural. I mainly felt sorry for the poor iParty store manager who was only trying to do what he thought was the right thing.
Charles Winokoor, Taunton Daily Gazette staff writer
(508) 880-9000 Ext. 32 / (508) 880-9119 fax
i also got a response. i think it would be against the user agreement for me to post it here. maybe i can paraphrase it a bit? he was very polite and said i made good points. he said the store owner was probably only trying to do his job and said that there needs to be clear cut legislation about the issue. i'm not sure if i feel like writing him back or not. i did read a bit about the iParty incident but haven't been following it closely from the beginning. did it happen in massachusetts? and they don't have breastfeeding in public laws? in south carolina i'm allowed to breastfeed anywhere i'm allowed to be, but that is just to clarify the law. breastfeeding in public has never been illegal as far as i know. to oh well i'm not sure what i want to convey him if anything, but i felt like i had to respond to his article. it was so ridiculous, but that is probably how he wanted it.
|I think breast feeding is healthy and fine. I mainly felt badly for the poor iParty store manager who was caught in the middle trying to do what he thought was the right thing.|
Bullocks he thinks it's healthy and fine. If he thought it was healthy, normal, and natural, he would not insist that it be done in secret. What he really means is, "it's fine so long as I can still pretend that it doesn't exist". If his concern was for the iParty employee who was put in a tight spot because of lack of clear cut laws regarding NIP, then he should voice his opinion on the need for legislation so as not to continue putting employees in such a position. I'm sorry, but he's just backpedaling himself into a brick wall.
I got a similar response.
This is what I wrote back:
You may need to reread your article. You still suggested that the proper place for babies to eat was in the ladies room. That is sick and unsanitary. What if I am offended by your chewing gum in public? Should I have the right to demand that you do it in the bathroom?
A woman feeding her child should be able to do so wherever the child and mother are legally allowed to be. As long as society suggests, as you did in your article, that the act of breastfeeding is somehow shameful and should be hidden (you ended your article by suggesting that women bring bottles when out in public - as if feeding your child a substandard food substance in a plastic container is the preferrable act) we will continue to have the abyssmally low breastfeeding rates that we have now.
Yes, businesses can set standards for their own employees. But mothers have the right to say "this is wrong!" and stand up for their rights by spreading the word that a business discriminates against breastfeeding mothers. (And yes, it is discrimination - the act of feeding the child is not the issue. A mother feeding her child formula in a bottle would never be told that it is necessary to feed the child standing next to a toilet in some nasty ladies room, would she? So the business is discriminating against the mother because of the source of her baby's nutrition.)
i emailed him as well ..
- - - - -
Perhaps you should add 'comedian' to your title as
I laughed and laughed! Yes, I did. Not with you, though, at you.
I hope your delicate sensibilites weren't offended too much by this
awful woman imposing her "version of an enlightened society" upon you.
You really should get therapy, because if you don't rush off
immeditely to talk to a professional about all this angst you've been
put through, it might just ruin your life forever.
|Thank you for your response. I suspect you have rather sensibly generated the same response to be given to everyone who critiques your article. Which is just fine, assuming you actually mean it.
To that end, I suggest you write a correcting article that promotes education over false assumptions. While there are many people who view breastfeeding and defecation as exactly the same thing, it is your job as a responsible journalist to concentrate on the truth rather than pandering to the masses.
The iParty store manager should have done whatever he would have done as a professional business person encountering a customer who needed to feed a baby. If he was more comfortable with bottlefeeding, he could have thought of what he would have done if the mother in question was using a bottle. Perhaps offered to find her a chair?
If you are truly sympathetic to the plight of those ignorant of the law and basic logic, then I suggest you write an article which teaches them how to appropriately respond when encountering a baby who needs to eat.
Is an excellent place to start doing the research.
This is what he wrote me: I don't believe women who breast-feed in public are immature. But I do think the woman in this case put the iParty store manager in a very unfair position; he was only trying to do what he thought was the right thing. I do appreciate you taking the time to email.